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Montag, 18. April 2011

Playing around at Volker´s smithy

 On Saturday I got in some quality singletrail riding and did some real hammering, pedal-to-the-metal mountainbike riding in the morning and got out to Volker´s smithy after lunchtime. There were little traffic and no kids, so we just played around a bit at the forge. Volker forged a big kitchen knife from an old file, quite a thin blade in the spine, so it will be quite a beast when cutting is concerned.
 Volker doing some straightening. That anvil´s one of my favourites. Viktor annealed and then ground it (!) from a piece of railroad section, drilled and filed a hardy hole in, and tempered it.... that guy is MAD!
 The coming to birth of two blades, and what might become of the second?
 This is a twining rod for the garden Volker forged. These are very popular with passers-by, a very popular gift! (How come?;-))
 The birth of a dragon... I tried out another dragon head with spiralling horns, but it was quite the fragile task. I made this one from spring steel, and could have used five hands, and I was all thumbs. Tell me a tale of flying, burning steel!;-) Have a scar on the belly now, and one intact bike jersey less. (Ever heard Polyester burns excellently?;-))
 That´s the finished one. I ground it with a new roto-grinder Viktor (again that madman!;-)) built from crap.
The head in detail... not as bad as I thought, but not as good either.

We forged for some three hours, cleaned up and had some really great asparagus soup, Jochen, the cook made. That guy is another great craftsman I have the privilege to know. He teaches me to have respect for food, and even love it. To be grateful plants and animals gave their lives, not (only) out of  some religious impulse, but simply because it makes sense. He treats the food he prepares with a deep love, and relishes in his work and the fruits of his work. He only uses materials of high quality, and the result tastes as great as they come. We had some great talk along the meal, had a cuppa coffee afterwards, and I rode home, again with the deep feeling of fullfilment I always have when hanging out with these folks. For this, I am grateful, too.


  1. I like the way you make Volker the madman sound. The road there by his place looks beautiful. I wonder if he has any "tricks" to keep thin blades from warping during the quench. Mine always warp. Your dragon knife looks good, better than I could do.

  2. Try dipping in a loam emulsion (also the edge part!) and the edge quench. After tempering, you have approx. 2 min time to straighten again while the rest heat draws into the edge (leftover austenite makes that possible).

    Was that of any assistance?


Now go on, discuss and rant and push my ego;-). As long as it´s a respectful message, every comment is welcome!

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